Posts Tagged ‘south africa’

Cape Town — Gallup, a leading research consultancy known for its opinion polls, has released its “Global States of Mind: New Metrics for World Leaders” report, which seeks to provide leaders at all levels of society with “timely, foward-looking economics on what their citizens are thinking”.

It is crucial for a country’s leadership to be in touch with the mood of its citizens, according to Gallup CEO Jim Clifton, as highlighted by the events of the Arab Spring.

Here are some high- and lowlights from the report: (more…)

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Helen Zille treads a narrow path. She’s a white woman, leading the main opposition party, against a former African liberation movement, in what you might call a “developing democracy”.

In many countries, the leader of the opposition can afford to rail and spin and generally throw mud at the ruling party without too much caution, while those in charge of running the government are held more firmly to account.

Here in South Africa the opposite often seems to hold true. (more…)

The world’s wealthy countries often criticise African nations for corruption – especially that perpetrated by those among the continent’s government and business leaders who abuse their positions by looting tens of billions of dollars in national assets or the profits from state-owned enterprises that could otherwise be used to relieve the plight of some of the world’s poorest peoples. (more…)

South African opposition parties have submitted a motion of no confidence against President Jacob Zuma saying that corruption and unemployment have risen, the justice system has been politicised, and the economy has weakened.

The motion, backed by eight parties, was triggered by the recent deadly mine strikes, the downgrading of the country’s credit rating by two major agencies, and big spending of state funds on Zuma’s rural residence, according to a joint statement by the parties on Thursday. (more…)

Africa’s economy may be booming, but this will do little to help unemployment and poverty if growth is jobless and its spoils are limited to the few.

“What we need in Africa is balanced development. Economic success cannot be a replacement for human rights or participation, or democracy … it (more…)

NOT so long ago, South Africa was by far the most serious and economically successful country in Africa. At the turn of the millennium it accounted for 40% of the total GDP of the 48 countries south of the Sahara, whereas Nigeria, three times more populous, lurched along in second place with around 14%. The remainder, in raw economic terms, barely seemed to count. (more…)

The sudden death of Ghana’s president, John Atta Mills, on July 24 did not come as a rude surprise. Most Ghanaians already knew his health was failing; he was losing his eyesight and voice.

For the seven months that I was in Ghana (Dec 2011-July 2012), he rarely made a public appearance — and despite official assertions to the contrary, most people did not believe he had the will nor the capacity to campaign (more…)

AFTER giving a speech at a business conference in London a young analyst chatted with investment executives in the audience, then followed two of them to a nearby hotel lobby. Over glasses of Chablis the executives raved about their company’s worldwide network of extravagantly decorated offices and their fat annual bonuses. Then they offered the analyst a job.

What surprised him was not their interest, nor the chunky salary, but the place where they wanted him to help invest their millions: west Africa, the most backward part of a poor continent. In recent years investors have been piling into Lagos and Nairobi as if they were Frankfurt and Tokyo of old. Anaemic growth in the rich world has made sub-Saharan Africa an attractive destination

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Africa is the hottest date in town.

Not a day goes by without me receiving an email about technology in Africa. NGOs, venture capitalists, wannabe investors, donors or technology providers from the US, UK, and Asia are all looking to explore the Africa continent.

Organisations want to tap into the African market because they have read somewhere in the Wall Street Journal, The Economist, or the New York Times that Africa is booming and that the continent is rising. (more…)

I recently stumbled on a Nigerians For Obama Twitter handle, launched on October 10 this year. “We nigerians in America (sic) want to tell Obama that we have got his back,” the inaugural tweet read. There’s nothing surprising about that — after all, Barack Obama, born of an African man, is “our son.”

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